Well, I am only doing karate for a year, so I can’t really give a good opinion yet because everything is so new for me.
What I can tell you is how we practise kata. Because we only have 3 classes per week, time is limited. One class a week is dedicated to kata. We practise the katas suited for our rank and I think there is quite some focus on good form, stances, accuracy of punches/blocks/kicks etc. Once in a while we also practise kata with ‘real opponents’, people will attack and you do your kata blocking their attacks and counter attack so to speak. Sometimes only the instructors show it with ‘real attackers’. This way the techniques used in the kata get a ‘real tone’ to them I guess And you will have to really aim your punches/kicks etc to the right height. Focus is also more on correct technique then on speed, first be able to do the kata good on a slow/intermediate speed before you can think about doing it quickly.
Unfortunately 1 hour a week focussing on kata is not a lot, especially because we also need to cover other areas such as self defense etc in the other classes. So the instructors stress that it is also your own responsibility to practise kata at home or whenever and where-ever possible. Especially now there is a tournament is coming up (kata and sparring) there is a big focus on kata and it being inch-perfect.
I do enjoy practising my kata and really notising that it gets better (although I am still sooooo far away from knowing it well of course, I realize I am just a newbie
, and also I do realize that it will take years of experience to get things even close to perfect).
So, that sums it up for me. And you never know, maybe one day I will have my kata inch-perfect (one can always dream
), if I at least trained as much as most guys/girls on this forum. For now (and coming years
), I just listen to my instructors when they say: do it again, more focus, better aim, better stances etc.